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tv   [untitled]    June 6, 2013 11:00am-11:31am PDT

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amendment. let me read you one of these conditions so you can see what i'm talking about. i have probably seen 20 of these in the last few years. if you have a conditional license and pretty much everybody does in san francisco, you can petition the abc to give you a license and in that petition they have give you the conditions. but this one says the petitioner shall utilize electronic equipment to record inside and outside of the premises and must be kept for 30 days and made available for the police department. that is pretty big brother and i will tell you why. i think berry is right. if there is some reason to have that surveillance, it should be made available. if you don't want to give it up, then a judge can get it from you. however, my job is to save my
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clients money and do the right thing for my clients. i tell everyone of my clients get video surveillance because in the last couple of years i have seen one client save a quarter million dollars with an ugly lawsuit. he can prove from the video when the person walked in the club and they were staggering when they came in and when they came out and they were beat up god knows where. they were able to prove it with the video. on new years day, my client had the best sophisticated surveillance and there had been a homicide down the street on new years day and this video surveillance was able to go outside, isolate a camera and zoom in on that
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person that walked in the liquor establishment and pretty much finger a murder and that murderer is off the street. there is really good reason to have video if you have a place, but where i draw the line is this part about whether it's to be kept for 30 days and made available to the police on demand, wrong. that's a little over the line on the big brother and i think you have to have a situation where they voluntarily give it up or get a search warranty from the judge. >> this is a time for the police to respond. >> i am going to the take responsibility for crafting that language and it was meant for my 16-year-old daughter and it was available to mom and dad. i will apply it to you.
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everyone here in the panel had a good point and brought to the police department's attention. we went back to drawing boards and we are looking at softening the language and making it applicable and unique to different locations or to businesses when they apply. our point is that sometimes you get confuse d with government installed cameras which has other rules and cameras installed in businesses. epa -- even if we don't ask that, it's up to the petitioner themselves to install that. it's an approach to deal with alcohol related issues. as you may or may not know, if there is an abc condition, you can
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come back within two years and modify that condition. not one person has asked to have their surveillance equipment or language struck from their conditions. it's mostly hours or some other conditions. i think what the panel said there that it's an opportunity. when a petitioner calls and says how can i protect my business? i suggest cameras. it kind of diffuses the situation if there is an allegation of misconduct by an employee. in fact we had one nightclub there was a homicide and that video was able to prove it was a justifiable homicide. we are going back to as what the supervisor said that we are crafting the language and softening the language and we are looking forward to doing business with any applicant in
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the future as well. the bottom line is it's been a big help for the police department. we are a progressive police department. there has not been a situation where we have requested video without a poce report. if you don't give me video voluntarily i'm going the correct way with a search warrant. we ask that you provide the tape when it's applicable. >> unfortunately, you have been outranked, as you leave your seat i would like to introduce to everybody -- never mind. deputy chief of field operations has showed up who was originally supposed to have that seat. i guess you must have been doing a good job and he bailed.
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[ laughter ] . >> i just wanted to mention that when i first on my club i didn't have a security camera and one day i walked in and my turn tables were gone and we installed a security system inside leaving out to the outside. one outside the door and inside leading to all the exit doors. my club was large. we had a lot of exit doors. i never did put any on my bar tenders. i trusted them. not only, we found a lot of good things from those cameras. one was we found that our janitor was stealing the toys from our toy drive. so that was not good. we were also able to assist the police. there was a kidnapping and rape and dump. they took somebody out from in front of our club and dumped her in redwood city and we were
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able to provide the tape for that and for me, a woman was suing me for breaking her ankle and we had video of her walking in the club perfectly fine and walking out of the club perfectly fine. cameras can work in all kinds of cases. >> shau? >> i have the pleasure of not only owning a security business but also a nightclub. it was 2010 world series and giants won and there was a shooting down the street on a club that didn't have cameras and we get to help out our own community and able to provide video footage of one of the
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potential suspects on that homicide. it does benefit us. there are issues of 4th amendment rights, i get that, but as bar owners we have dealt with the person that said i slipped and fell in your bar or the security mishandled me when i was being carried out. video footage will help address that and eliminate that. complaints, often if your security is doing the right thing. so you as a business owner has to make that decision and say how strongly do i believe in my customers right to privacy versus my businesses being viable and successful. i think there is an easy balance there and cameras will help. one other thing with regards to cameras, they are very inexpensive. for a thousand dollars you can get a
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decent camera. and make sure your lighting is good too. >> do you have cameras? >> yes. i installed cameras about 8 years ago. i originally did it because i didn't trust my employees. i ended up firing a lot of them because of what i found. but ironically that film didn't help me. i fired one bartender for being high and drunk. when he applied for unemployment insurance that video footage meant nothing and i still had to let him go. but we still have some very positive incidents where like someone told here where about 7 years ago a friend of mine was sitting at a bar and her purse went missing and the police used our footage to bust a ring
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of six or seven purse snatchers that had been hitting bars all over the city. we had another incident where there was a robbery down the street, 16th street and the person came to our bar and we had him on footage. every time the police have come to us and asked us for footage, we have given it to them and it's helped for the community than it does for the bar. they are cheap. as a bar owner i would highly recommend them for your own business. you don't even have to ever use them until something bad happens, but just having that eye on your staff will keep them honest knowing that they are being watched even if you don't look at the footage. they even sell dummy cameras. that doesn't do much. you want to be able to watch more. but i don't agree that it should be imposed
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on anybody. it should be your own business decision and i think it's a wise business decision. >> okay. so, i would like to just stop for a moment and if you don't mind and then we'll take questions of the panel. our chief of police is here greg sur who missed the trivia question that was asked about him and i would like to call him. c'mon up. i would like to call him to address you at this time and then we'll open the floor to questions and answers. and as he's making his way to the podium, one of the things, i hope you all got one of these. on the way out, everybody pick up one of these. this is the san francisco at the -- at the entertainment
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commission about nightlife. there will be a break out group for the managers and security. this has a lot of really good stuff in it and plus it's really pretty. thanks to our commissioner al prerz perez who did this. now i would like to introduce to you chief sur. [ applause ] >> i apologize. we have one meeting for the police department and required for all captains and i can't even send anybody because we are in lock down for that meeting. this is the meeting where every time we have this summit i have not missed. i'm a huge entertainment person. i love going out in san francisco. i hope that jocelyn and -- are my
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personal friends. i want to assure everyone that the police department is here for you. tourism drives this city, entertainment drives this city. we just had beta brekers, i hope everybody thinks it was a success. this was all this weekend and now it goes as the weather gets better and we have daylight savings time and i enjoy the panel discussion on video surveillance. i have to again -- reassure you, the camera is for you, for your safety, outside the portal to your place. we have made cases, solved violent crime, absolved people of accusations. it's been a smart thing to do. it is not our video. it is your video. we could not come and
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take your video. if you want to give it to us sooner rather than later, we would appreciate it, otherwise we have no problem to protect you via search warrant and we won't ask unless we have probable cause to do this. this is nothing about big brother watching or trying to get in anybody's business. this is after the fact only to solve whatever happens to make sure it doesn't happen again to keep your patrons safe and your image in nightlife in san francisco so this town can continue to just boom because for however long the recession was here, it seems like it blew by. the unemployment is 5.4 percent and a ton of those folks are working at your restaurants. we
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are making gains on broadway. i know we have evenings where it's dicier and we appreciate your patience. we really don't want to be the wet blanket on entertainment at the police department. we want to be the engaged cops telling people have a good time. we are here for directions. we are not supposed to give recommendations but we all eat. again, we all really really are here for you and i will stay for all the questions, but i want to reassure you again that the video cameras that are being asked by rich and i think he used the phrase that he had a 16-year-old daughter in mind and that it's up to you on how you protect your asset which i thought was metaphoric.
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[ laughter ] . you were paying attention. yeah. east coast. that's a hint. i'm not leaving. i'm around. if anybody has a question or concern about how anything goes. you can ask my office and i will get back to you personally and i wish everybody a super successful year until next year at the next summit. thank you. >> [ applause ] i have to say that greg is one of the most approachable police chief's that we have. i also have to say the restaurant is now opening one in dc and that it is a direct descendants of
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your family. he's been in the business before he was born. okay. unless someone from the panel wants to make further comments on either the last call 4:00 a.m. or the cameras, anybody? i will open the floor to questions. c'mon up one at a time, keep them short. hello, berry? >> i'm berry, i'm an advocate for the club owners and club goers. i'm very concerned about the camera issue. because the board of supervisors nixed the idea of getting a requirement for entertainment permit by having these security and surveillance cameras. the police had to go another route by making it a condition on the
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liquor licenses. it really disturbs me and the question i have is a whole issue about having access to the videos that the 4th amendment, the 5th amendment is the club should not have to incriminate themselves by automatically giving up the videos. that's my concern is how can we create the balance of having the videos available to the police at the same time have not making a point of where the club has to be put in a position where they maybe considered for some violation or crime or fine. there has to be someway the law says these videos cannot be used solely for creating a fine or creating closing down a club or venue for what the police saw in the videos.
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>> again, thank you for your questions. the video would be after the fact. after a criminal offense and it's not compulsory on the owner to give up the video. the owner could ask that we get a search warrant and a judge would be the referee and final decider on whether or not the police department could have the video. if the judge says you don't have probable cause to ask for that video, then that's that. >> let me add, this is a very important issue and the context of liquor licenses just so you know, the request is heard by the board of supervisors. it actually comes through neighborhood services and public safety committee that i chair and what we have seen is we have made it clear that we want to work with the police department on the right language for those cases wherein deed a security camera
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should be required but also to make it clear where it isn't required in fact it is a choice because one of the issues that i have seen is that for some owners, they have felt that even though the language and the way people talk about it makes it seem like it's not mandatory. they feel it's not technically mandatory but they have to agree to it others the license won't be issued. we try to get to the bottom of that to make sure that we strike the right balance and in terms of the access to the videos that it is along the lines of what the chief is saying. likewise there was language in there about continuous monitoring of the cameras, that should not be required. that is actually something that the city itself doesn't even do with the cameras that it has on the streets. of so we are very mindful of that and i think there is a process in place to address that and we are working closely with the police to make sure that we get to the right result.
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>> thank you, any other questions? c'mon down. >> one comment on that. licensing fees should be very clear that if a condition of your permit says that you must make footage available to sf p.d. and you choose not to make footage available to the sf p.d., is my time up? then abc couldn't come to you and say you are in violation of your conditions of your permit and your permit can be rescinded. >> okay. you are up. >> my name is debbie. i have a bar. i put security cameras in right away because i live in the neighborhood as well and i know what goes on and it helps
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to remove drug dealing from that corner all the way down the block. it actually cleaned up quite a bit. the homeless people don't sit on my side. it's awesome. but i volunteered footage. i have one person completely caught on video and she came back to my bar an i addressed her and made her leave. also recorded that video footage. the woman's purse that was stolen, i gave that to the police and i was going to follow up and maybe give them this video again. as a bar owner, i called the police out. it wasn't a crime in progress, i get it. i called them out and -- it's in a police report. my video is now in the police report. which is ammunition where i can have a problem with
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a neighbor people smoking outside and someone would say they have been in six police reports. it's a good thing. i have given video. how does the police address that because i do other venue owners that don't want to call the police because they don't want to be listed because abc says you have had this many calls. i want to be a helpful owner and want to ensure to help the police as much as possible. >> we stand with you. if you want a letter from me on department letterhead saying the circumstances by which you happened to be named six times that you are actually someone who is a pronator a friend to the victim it might help you more than hinder you. >> okay. anybody else?
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>> hello, my name is duncan. i own a few bars. i can consider serving until 4:00 a.m.. just being allowed to be open in the 3 or 4:00. not necessarily serving alcohol. but if you just force hundreds of people out on the street at 1:55 and causing chaos. i like the soft close because once you take the booze out of it, people will go home. this is just a theory that i have. i think that you would see a noticeable decrease in the crime in the complaints
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from neighbors, etc all the things that go into closing time. i would like to hear your feedback on that it's not necessarily about the alcohol. >> so right now the police department is down about a hundred officers. 16 in staffing. i'm told by police that they have no problems with 4:00 in the morning but they have 40,000 police officers in the city. it's a resource issue for us at least for right now having a conversation because the daytime people where the most people have been dying for beat officers, officers on foot, officers on bicycles, school resource officers . if the hours were stretched, it would stress our resources that much later into night to cover
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those extra hours making this a 24 hour time like new york is. right now it's not a conversation that we are in a position to have. >> so i understand there is going to be some policing training. >> we have plans to be full staffing by 2018. >> you have a question? >> it's more of just a comment going along with the 4 a.m. legislature. i know you said you are short on resources, it's also something to consider the standpoint of club employees. i work the bar staff and ride a bicycle. if a show goes really late and the bars
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let out at 130 and all these massive people and it's an issue of safety for employees also along with patrons. i know you mentioned your club gets out at 4:00. we are next to you. i guess it's more of thinking about the fact that when everybody is released all at once, i think it's a safety issue for employees too that are trying to get home for people working there. it's our jobs and you know it's offending for myself with these bicycles and i'm offending for my life with people swerving. >> i'm sure this is a room where if we took a vote, i would be in the minority. my
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job is to enforce the laws in the book. if it does change to 4:00. we will figure it out, but if in my opinion now where i place my resources, the way right now is i believe the best i can do for managing the resources i have. >> okay. >> part of it too is one of the things we want is the clubs to police themselves and we don't ask people to be pushed out into street. they have a responsibility for these individuals as they leave as well. so sean as another private companies do a good job of policing the streets and we leave it to the individual owners on any given night and i have said to other individuals as well that to take the
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temperature of your club and if you don't like what's going on, shut it down a little bit earlier and shut the music down a little bit early so they are not all taken out at one time. if you have different genres omusic and different cultures, that's where there could be some tension. we ask the owners to take responsibility not only for the people in the club, but when they get out as well they police the sidewalks and call the police department. as previous individuals we have never puntively addressed anyone when they call. we address the calls accordingly. we tend to use the numbers favorably. >> back to what this chief
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said, i certainly understand the fact that staffing drives a lot of this and i think it would be useful for us given where we are in terms of staffing to have a conversation of what would it take in terms of resources to get to the right amount of staffing prior to 18 if that's where we are now and talking about making changes that could expand hours i'm sure this community could be very interested in working with the police department to get to that point, 2018 is a long time. but i think that to expedited the right result with staffing, there are things we can do right now. we are undermining our own efforts to grow the economy and hopefully we don't have to wait to have th